The Utah Utes (8-4) face off against the Northwestern Wildcats (7-5) on Saturday, December 23rd. This game will be played at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas and televised on ABC. Both team’s come into this one having won their previous games. Kickoff is set for 7:30 ET.
Utah Utes vs Northwestern Wildcats
The Utah Utes Are Coming Off A Win
Utah most recently faced off against Colorado, picking up a 23-17 win over the Buffaloes. During their most recent win, quarterback Luke Bottari found the end zone with two rushing touchdowns and gained 11 rushing yards. In the passing game, he achieved a completion rate of 60.0% and passed for 61 yards, resulting in a passer rating of 77.5.
Despite winning straight-up, Utah did not cover the spread as pre-game 21.5 point favorites. Meanwhile, the teams fell short of the over/under line of 43.5 points.
This season, the Utah Utes are currently 8-4. So far this season, they have played five road games and six at home.
Utah’s average scoring differential for the season is +4.8 leading to an ATS mark of 6-5. The Utes have been favored six times and the underdog in five games. Overall, this season, Utah holds an over/under record of 5-6. Finally, on average, their games have produced a combined total of 44.2 points, with the typical over/under line set at 45.8 points.
The Northwestern Wildcats Are Coming Off A Win
Northwestern’s most recent game finished in a tight 45-43 win over Illinois. During their most recent game, quarterback Ben Bryant had 32 passing attempts against Illinois. In addition, he finished the game with 234 passing yards and a completion rate of 75.0%. He also threw two interceptions in the win.
In the end, not only did Northwestern win straight-up, they also covered the spread as 6-point underdogs. Overall, the team’s 88 combined points surpassed the over/under line of 48.
Meanwhile, the Northwestern Wildcats take on the Utah with a 7-5 record, including 2-3 on the road and 3-2 at home.
Against the spread, Northwestern has gone 7-3 this season. The Wildcats have been favored two times compared to eight games as the underdog. In 12 games played, the average over/under line for Northwestern’s games has been set at 42.9 points. These contests have seen an average combined score of 46.6 points, resulting in an OU record of 5-5.
Utah Offense Breakdown
Utah’s offense is averaging 24.5 points per game, which ranks them 69th in the NCAA. Through the air, they’re at 173.6 passing yards on average, putting them at 115th in the nation. Their rushing attack is currently 33rd in rushing yards, with an average of 507 rushing attempts per game this season.
This season, Bryson Barnes has been responsible for 1517 passing yards, maintaining an average of 11.3 per completion. He has a completion rate of 58.5%, having thrown 12 touchdowns.
Northwestern Offense Breakdown
In the rushing game, the Wildcats are currently 60th in college football with 416 attempts per game. This has resulted in an average of 108.2 rushing yards per game, putting them 115th nationally. Their passing game has averaged 29 passes and 200.1 yards per game. When it comes to scoring, they are 81st, averaging 22.8 points per game.
All in all, Quarterback Ben Bryant leads the team with 1585 passing yards while completing 61.7% of his passes. So far, he is averaging 6.5 yards per passing attempt.
Utah Team Defense
Additionally, Utah’s defense enters the game ranked 119th in passing yards allowed per game. Opponents throw the ball an average of 31.8 times against the Utes. They have given up 19.8 PPG, which ranks 66th in college football. In terms of rushing yards allowed, they stand at 9th in the NCAA.
Northwestern Team Defense
Northwestern’s defense sits at 87th for points allowed, allowing 23.8 points per game. So far, teams have been averaging 192.1 passing yards per game against them (41st nationally). On the ground, they’re yielding 160.7 rushing yards, ranking them 103rd in college football.
Utah vs Northwestern Trends
- Looking at Utah’s ten most recent road games, they have put together a record vs. the spread of 4-6.
- Northwestern’s ATS record at home (last three) is 3-0.
- Looking back at the last three times Northwestern went into a game as the underdog, their ATS mark was 3-0.
- Over their last five games as the betting favorite, Utah has an ATS record of 3-2.
In conclusion, like they have done all season, Utah will be heading into this game looking to establish the run. Therefore, I like them to have a good game on the ground and to cover the spread over Northwestern.
My bet for this game is the over, with the current over/under line at 42. So far this season, Northwestern games have averaged a combined score of 46.6 points, and I foresee this game surpassing 42.
All odds are courtesy of Action247 Sportsbook. Good luck!!
* All odds are provided by Action247 Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.**All views expressed are my own. My picks are my own and are not a guarantee, bet at your own risk.Action247 does not warrant the accuracy of completeness of the information, text, graphics, links or other items contained within these post.